Xabi Alonso has been urged to appoint a Liverpool star as his player-coach should he assume Jurgen Klopp’s managerial position.
Last month, Jurgen Klopp surprised many by announcing his decision to step down as Liverpool’s manager at the conclusion of the season, culminating a nine-year tenure at Anfield.
During Klopp’s tenure, Liverpool secured four significant trophies, notably clinching the Premier League title after a three-decade hiatus.
Alonso faces the daunting task of succeeding Klopp, a feat that demands filling remarkably large shoes, prompting suggestions that he is the ideal candidate for the role.
The former midfielder has intimate knowledge of Liverpool from his five-year tenure at Anfield between 2004 and 2009. This season, he has undeniably showcased his coaching prowess.
Alonso assumed leadership at Bayer Leverkusen in 2022, orchestrating a remarkable transformation, propelling the club into contention for the Bundesliga title.
His team currently leads Bayern Munich by two points at top of the league table. Furthermore, having secured a spot in the semi-finals of the DFB Pokal, they remain unbeaten in domestic competition this season.
Despite a plethora of esteemed coaches, such as Carlo Ancelotti, Zinedine Zidane, and Luciano Spalletti, being associated with the Anfield managerial role, Alonso stands out as the prime candidate.
Anticipation among fans for his succession of Klopp is palpable, with some suggesting an unusual appointment upon his arrival.
Certain supporters urge Alonso to enlist his former Spanish teammate Thiago Alcantara as a player-coach. The midfielder’s tenure at Liverpool has been marred by injuries ever since his transfer from Bayern in a £20 million deal in 2020.
After enduring a nine-month injury hiatus, the 32-year-old made his comeback in Liverpool’s 3-1 Premier League loss to Arsenal on Sunday, only to potentially face yet another injury setback during his brief five-minute appearance.
Opinions among fans are divided: while some are eager to bid farewell to Thiago as his contract winds down at the conclusion of the season, others urge Alonso to retain him in a player-coach role.
“Thiago as a couch/Player could work really well for all parties,” one Liverpool fan on X said, while another commented: “If this works… a new Premier League era starts.”
The idea of Thiago transitioning into a coaching role sparks intrigue. In June, Diogo Jota, Fabinho, and Joel Matip were observed pursuing their UEFA coaching badges at the club’s training facility, yet Thiago abstained from participation. Nevertheless, some supporters exhibit less enthusiasm regarding Thiago assuming a new position within the club.
“He [Alonso] definitely would not want Thiago playing,” one fan said, while another cruelly joked “Thiago would still pick up as injury as coach.”